The NAHJ Philadelphia chapter board joins its allies, the Philadelphia Association of Black Journalists (PABJ), the Asian American Journalists Association Philadelphia chapter (AAJA), and Free Press, who are all members of the Journalism Accountability Watchdog Network (J.A.W.N.), in giving a vote of “no confidence” to The Philadelphia Inquirer after the city’s paper of record failed to address numerous issues around diversity, equity, inclusion, and coverage of Philly’s diverse communities.
Members of NAHJ Philly, PABJ, and AAJA Philly met with the leadership of the Inquirer newspaper and board members of the Inquirer and the Lenfest Institute of Journalism to discuss issues regarding DEI initiatives, complaints of racism in the newsroom brought forth by members of the respective groups, and inadequate community engagement with Philadelphia's communities of color and immigrant communities. NAHJ Philly brought forth concerns about the lack of Latinx journalists across the paper's news desks and the demise of bilingual Spanish/English content on El Inquirer. Those concerns remain unaddressed.
In response, J.A.W.N. issued a joint statement to give a vote of “no confidence” in the Inquirer leadership, asserting that the paper does not have a genuine interest in reaching shared grounds to address ongoing DEI concerns that J.A.W.N., and members of the public, have consistently raised over the years. The statement reads, "As a result, we as the Journalism Accountability Watchdog Network give a vote of “no confidence” in the Inquirer leadership - from its board, to its publisher, to its masthead and problematic managers - until there is a major change in leadership across the company. Given this collective vote of “no confidence,” in good conscience we, as JAWN, cannot actively recommend anyone to opportunities at the Inquirer. This includes fellowship, internship, apprenticeship or hiring initiatives, especially when previous opportunities to partner with members of JAWN on these initiatives have not been upheld by the company. We have no confidence that the Inquirer shares a genuine interest in reaching shared grounds to address ongoing DEI concerns that we, and members of the public, have consistently raised over the years" Read the full statement here.